Metro bus project: CDGR fails to remove encroachments from roads

RAWALPINDI: The City District Government Rawalpindi (CDGR) has failed to remove encroachments from the roads, particularly from those being used as alternative routes by the motorists while the metro bus service project is being completed on the Murree Road.The residents of Raja Bazaar, College Road, China Market, Circular Road, Saidpur Road, Banni, Jamia Masjid Road, and other areas have been voicing their concern over the illegal occupation of the roads by the encroachers, who park their vehicles and have set up all sorts of businesses on the roads, not only causing extreme traffic congestion but also creating problems for the pedestrians.The citizens said that the encroachments are on the rise as the authorities have failed to control the situation. They said that the encroachments on Saidpur Road, Banni Chowk, and Circular Road have become a headache, as they hampered the movement of traffic and the pedestrians.The citizens urged the authorities concerned to come up with a solution of the problem and remove the encroachments without discrimination. They said that the encroachments had not only marred the beauty of the town, but also damaged the roads, causing great hardships for the residents travelling through alternate routes available to them.The situation is much worse at the Circular Road, College Road, China Market, and Jamia Masjid Road, as the shopkeepers have occupied both sides of the roads and footpaths. The motorcycle dealers and auto workshops owners have also occupied both sides of the Circular Road. “It has become a parking space for the encroachers while fruit sellers have set up stalls on the walkway and road,” Faizi, a resident of the area said, adding that the phenomenon has become the biggest problems for the area residents. Aamir, a resident of Saidpur Road, said that the encroachers rule the area and the authorities should remove them. “The encroachers also litter the road by throwing garbage in the open. We have lodged several complaints with the administration but so far no action has been taken,” he added.He said that the taxi drivers are also augmenting the problem by parking their vehicles haphazardly on the roads. It is pertinent to mention here that the Punjab government had directed the city district government to remove encroachments from all parts of the city for the construction work of the metro bus service. As per orders of the chief minister, Rawalpindi Commissioner Captain (r) Zahid Saeed and DCO Sajid Zafar Daal had directed the Rawal Town Tehsil Administration (RTTA) administrator to launch a grand operation for eliminating all types of encroachments from the roads. Following the orders, the enforcement cell of the RTTA started an operation against the temporary and permanent encroachments along Benazir Bhutto Road, Circular Road, Sabzi Mandi, Kallan Bazaar, Pirwadhai, Khayaban-e-Sir Syed, Sadiqabad, Muslim Town, Liaquat Road, and Raja Bazaar.According to the RTTA spokesperson, the ongoing anti-encroachment drive is being supervised by the town municipal officer. A large number of truckloads of goods have been confiscated by the Enforcement Cell. The seized items of the encroachers would be auctioned. Besides this, the RTTA would also impose big fines on the encroachers to prevent them from re-establishing their business illegally along the roads and outside shops. Traders and shopkeepers have been warned not to allow anyone to set up business outside shops, failing which action would be taken against them under the law. 

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